Associations: Fringe vs Shogun

I’m watching Fringe these days, a TV show that started in 2008 and is now in the middle of its third season. Currently I’m almost finished with the second season. The show is somewhat inspired by the old X-Files show. A special unit is pursuing and unraveling supernatural accidents or crime scenes. Usually the episodes are more or less isolated, but sometimes they also return to a main storyline that slowly unfolds and intrigues. Just like X-Files.

I must admit that I wasn’t completely won over by the show in the first season. Walter Bishop is a bit too eccentric and they repeat too many of his odd habits. In the second season there are too many episodes where he dominates completely, leaving the other protagonists as mere bystanders. Nevertheless the show is still starting to grow on me as the episodes in the second half of the second season got better. Especially the episode with a younger Walter Bishop was magnificent.

Sam Weiss

In the second season, Nina Sharp suggests Olivia Dunham visits Sam Weiss, a bowling alley owner that also helped Nina regain use of her new cybernetic prosthetic arm. Olivia goes to him but finds his advice oblique and frustrating, although often helpful.

Almost immediately as soon as Sam Weiss (Kevin Corrigan) appeared on the screen, he reminded me of Father Martin Alvito (Damien Thomas) in the old Shogun TV mini-series from 1980.

Sam Weiss (Fringe) and Father Alvito (Shogun)
Sam Weiss in Fringe and Father Alvito in Shogun.

The resemblance is almost uncanny. Not just because the two actors look so much like each other, but also in the way they act. Both Sam Weiss and Father Alvito have this stoic way about them.

Sam Weiss (Fringe) and Father Alvito (Shogun)
Both Sam Weiss and Father Alvito are mysterious characters.

Every time I see Sam Weiss in Fringe, I can’t help but think of this connection. It’s almost as if the producers of the show actually intended Sam Weiss to be that exact same type.

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